May 17th, 1839 -- Republic of Texas defeats revolutionary plotters in key action
On this day in 1839, Manuel Flores and his band were defeated on the North San Gabriel River by Texas Rangers. Flores had led an expedition from Matamoros carrying war supplies to Texas Indians whom the Mexicans were trying to organize as allies. After killing four members of a party of surveyors between Seguin and San Antonio on May 14, the Flores group was trailed by a company of rangers for two days. Some of the rangers, led by Lt. James O. Rice, confronted the Mexican group on the North San Gabriel on May 17 and routed them. Flores was reported among the dead. In the baggage removed after the skirmish the Texans found several documents that seemed to link the Cherokee Indians with a Mexican plot to conquer Texas. These documents prompted President Lamar to demand that the Cherokees leave Texas, and this precipitated the Cherokee War.